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Dolores Norton Research Award

This award is presented each year to recognize a promising doctoral student or post-doctoral scholar in the field of infant and toddler social-emotional health, development, and intervention. The award honors Dolores Norton, known to most as “Dodie,” who is the Samuel Deutsch Professor Emerita at the School of Social Service Administration of the University of Chicago. Professor Norton has been a mentor to a generation of graduate students who learned from her the importance of early child development, the roles of community and culture in early child development, the principles of family support practice, and the ways research can inform practice. Dr. Norton devoted her research career to understanding children and families living in conditions of poverty and to understanding children and families through the complex lens of a systems ecological framework.

The award provides $5,000 to support research on an open topic regarding: (1) social-emotional development or mental health during the zero to five age period; (2) behaviors, beliefs, and mental health of expectant parents or parents of young children; and/or (3) interventions for infants, young children, or families. The award is open to doctoral students or postdoctoral fellows enrolled in or affiliated with an educational or research institution in Illinois. Area of discipline is open.

Application procedure

To apply, please submit the following by the application deadline.
1. Application form (download here: 2018 Fall Conference Dolores Norton Research Award Application)
2. Curriculum vita
3. Letter of recommendation from primary adviser that includes comments on feasibility and timeline of proposed project. The letter should be submitted directly to email address below.

Applications will be reviewed by the Illinois Association for Infant Mental Health Research Committee. The recipient will be chosen based on the quality of the study proposed and the potential for contribution to the scholarly literature and to practice. The award will be presented on October 19, 2018, at the ILAIMH Annual Conference (awardee will be notified in advance, and will be given complimentary registration for the conference, as well as a year’s membership in ILAIMH). Awardee will be expected to present a progress report after one year that indicates how he/she used the funds and the progress of the proposed project. Awardee is also expected to present on the project to the ILAIMH membership in a brief report in the ILAIMH newsletter.

Application deadline

All applications must be received by 5 pm (CT), September 7, 2018

Submit applications to

David J. Bridgett, Ph.D., ILAIMH Research Committee Norton Award Chair,

Previous Awardees

2017 Niyantri Ravindran. Project Title: Maternal Dispositional Distress Reactivity, Physiological Regulation and Supportive Behavior: A Dynamic Approach
2016 Jaclyn Saltzman. Project Title: Bringing Emotion to the Table: Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Mealtime Interactions
2015 Amanda Lossia. Project Title: Stakeholder feedback on a novel intervention for preschool-age children with disruptive behavior problems: A thematic analysis.
2015 Jacob Holzman. Project Title: Examining Endogenous and Exogenous Factors that Alter Toddler’s Stress Responses to Social Situations.
2014 Mariel Sparr. Project Title: Participant Responsiveness in Home Visiting: A Missing Piece in the Puzzle of Evidence Based Programs and Implementation Science?